Hey! It’s Saturday again! How convenient!
Here’s a little test. Look at the paintings below. Decide whether the person in the painting should be described as a Subject or an Object. A Subject, just like in grammar, is a person (or thing, but we’re talking about humans here, so bear with me) who DOES something; takes some sort of action. The Subject is a person who does stuff. An Object, just like in grammar, is a person who things are done TO. Stuff happens to Objects. Subjects DO STUFF. Objects have STUFF DONE TO THEM. This morning in the Boston Globe I came across this sentence: “The man accused of murdering his former girlfriend told police she slashed him on the finger – so he stabbed her repeatedly and then drove around the South Shore as she bled to death while sitting next to him in a car, according prosecutors and a police report.” Now, I grant you that the who did what to whom in that sentence is somewhat murky. After all, she DID “slash” his finger. The bitch. But either way, do you agree with me, that in that example, Edward Aduayi is the SUBJECT of the sentence, and Karneetha Sanders is the OBJECT? Excellent. Now on to the Visual Portion of this test. In the pictures below, one of the people is depicted as a SUBJECT (someone who does stuff), and the other is depicted as an OBJECT (someone stuff is done to). Which is which?
Before tuning in to Goddess Radio, be sure to get your Daily Dose of Outrage right heah. The middle link comes by way of a commenter at Twisty’s, who has posted a not-to-be-missed series of essays as part of Art Week at her I Blame the Patriarchy blog. Twisty herself is, obviously, brilliant, but read the comments for the most comprehensive edification. I’ve been mulling over a half dozen of the ideas I read there all week. I agree with her that pornography is, in fact, art because art, in her words, is simply “an idea with a frame around it” (yes, the frame can be metaphorical). So yup, pornography is art; It frames the thought that “Pornography is the graphic representation of rape, presented from the point of view that rape is awesome.” Or, because I can’t resist the urge to paste a longish quote from this brilliant post:
“When rape apologists and misogynist pervs defend their crap-ass pornography as art, I say let’em. Well, first I say fuck’em, because they’re sociopaths. But then I say let’em. Let’em have that splintery old bone of contention. So what if Paddy the Pornographer calls his deviantART voyeurfest “art”? What’s the big whoop? Fine, it’s art already. You’re still a fucking perv exploiter motherfucker.
That’s right, I’m saying pornography is art. Take a Xanax. It’s not like art is God or something. The way I see it, art has no problem sinking to the level of pornography.
Now that that’s out of the way, we can get down to the business of radical feminist critique of that shit. We can get on with the case against art of violence, art of oppression, art of human suffering, art of titillation. If pornographers don’t have to defend pornography as art, we can force’em to defend it as good art. Which is of course impossible! Good art is informed by Truth ‘n’ Beauty, not by violence, oppression, human suffering, and titillation.”
Good stuff. On the other hand, the women at EVE (Equal Visibility Everywhere) led by Lynette Long, are doing everything right. I love their agenda, their methods, and their no-nonsense Let’s Just Do This attitude. I’m adding their widget to the left sidebar so Pumas can check in and join in on their ongoing actions. Check out the PowerPoint presentation Dr. Long made “showing” the invisibility of women in the public sphere. She says that she presented this slide show to 400 or so progressive, social change types at a conference in D.C. recently and the reaction was thunderous shock. As Long puts it, we can’t really see what’s so damn invisible, that is, us women.
You’ll definitely need some Goddess Radio to ease the mental contortions that spending some time with Twisty and her pals, as well as the women of EVE. Can’t think of a better way to spend a Saturday, really.
Click HERE to listen live.
I guess the point of all this is, having spent the better part of a week thinking about art and words and women, it seems to me the most important rule to live by is: No matter what, where, when, or how, always BE A SUBJECT. Never be an Object. Don’t lie on the bed. Get up and cross the Delaware.